NBA Fit Friday

nba2By Gabriel Lorenzo

New York school children shot hoops with the pros on February 13 when players from the NBA hit the courts of 100 public schools across the five boroughs.

The event, NBA Fit Friday, was a health and basketball clinic that coincided with the 2015  All-Star weekend.

Kids had the chance to interact with big name NBA players and learned about health benefits of living an active lifestyle.

Public School 87 in the Bronx hosted a fitness clinic with one of the NBA’s most prominent players, Portland Trail-Blazers Star Power Forward LaMarcus Aldridge.

An electrified audience of middle school kids went wild upon his arrival.  “To be able to come here and reach out to the kids is big,” said Aldridge. “I know this is something they will remember and I’m proud to be a part of it.”

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“This is a great opportunity to give back by teaching kids the importance of staying healthy,” said the four-time All Star.

Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz and former NBA player Felipe Lopez were also on the court. Diaz took jump shots in his suit.  Lopez, a Bronx native who played five seasons in the NBA (1998-2002), said he felt at home.

“To have this kind of program for the youth, to show them that we are really out here for them, it motivates them,” said Lopez. “How many of us can say that an All-Star came to their school? So you know this is going to be something they remember.”

PS 87 Principal Donna Anaman said she was pleased with the NBA’s upgrading of the school’s indoor basketball facility. “The kids are going to remember this when they are grandparents. This is a once in a lifetime experience.”

The event was among many events that happened over the weekend during the annual NBA All-Star weekend like the Sprite Slam Dunk Contest and the Footlocker Three-Point competition. The 64th Annual All-Star game will be played in Madison Square Garden, home of the New York Knicks.

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